Today’s been one of those ‘not-so-clear-thinking’ sort of days. One of those, put the milk in the cabinet and the cups in the fridge sort of days. But I keep thinking: God is not the author of confusion but of peace and also that He has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind. These are part of the whatsoever’s I’ve been thinking on (after I give into fretful confusion and recognize the need to clear thinking!). So, in an attempt to take every thought captive, I’m needing to continually resort to the whatsoever things are true, honest, just pure, lovely… think on these things.
We’re preparing for Timothy’s soon departure to Ghana, West Africa, where he will begin life as a missionary. Suddenly, today, I’m feeling overwhelmed, underestimating what needs to be done and in the midst of a flood of emotion I’m attempting to gather the needful things, address the necessary and set aside the unimportant – things for today.
While I knew this was coming, and really, I could say that everything and nothing has prepared me for this day, truly I see that it’s the hand of the Lord and His ways that matter – not what I think of these days and not even what I can pack or prepare to send that matters. I guess I know that no matter what we pack and send, there are so many unknowns and, in reality, not much space to pack the ‘known’ or the needed items.
If it were up to Timothy, I think the bag might contain a few articles of clothing, several books, his Bible, some commentaries and some pens – some pictures and important papers. And soccer balls. Minimal toiletries. And a hand pump. I think, so far, that’s all he’s packing. He’s found, wherever he goes, soccer balls speak a universal language – somehow, the simple activity of kicking around a ball, breaks language & social barriers and opens doors of communication unlike anything else. Well, maybe food, too. So… soccer balls travel well.
I’m waiting for an opportunity to add my two cents or at least a few things that make sense to me — you know, and at least a few things that will say to him: I love you. I’m also thinking of survival type things… double checking things like meds, first-aid, flashlights, two-way radios, herbs for ailments, nutrition bars, tissues and purell. Maybe, by the time he boards the plane, most or all of those things will already be or will have found their way into his bags.
I hugged him goodnight… mindful that he’ll not be here for good night hugs and humorous recounting of the days’ activities… after tonight’s sleep, he will likely fondly remember the cozy night’s sleep… the queen size bed, the memory-foam mattress and the down comforter that snuggles nice and warm with the window open just a tad for some cool fresh air. He smiled as he, too, realized it would be a long, long time before such a night’s sleep happens again.
I’ll write more about this later. For now, it’s off to dreamland… and that lingering place between awake and sleep when reality slips away and memories and dreams fade into yesterday. And a new journey begins — actually, a bittersweet journey that began 20 years ago, and this is just the next page…